A Circumstantial Narrative Of The Campaign In Russia
The 29th Bulletin of the Grand Armée of the French Empire arrived in the heart of Paris on the 16th of December 1812, causing an uproar and consternation. Napoleon admitted that he had lost huge numbers of the troops during the Russian campaign and had been forced to retreat. In a master work of half-truths and omissions, Napoleon attempted to put all of his talents of spin to revealing the extent of the disaster, as if to cheer the war-weary population of his Empire to the end with a flourish—“ The health of his Majesty was never better.”
The health of the remaining survivors as they struggled back through the staggering cold, with few rations, constant attacks and little hope, was very different to that of their master. Captain Labaume trudged through the ice in the company of Napoleon’s step-son Eugène with the remnants of the Italian troops. With each step he grew more determined to ensure that the loss of his comrades would not be in vain. He wrote his version of the events during the march using gunpowder and melted snow for ink. Published after Napoleon’s fall in 1814, Labaume revealed the shocking truth behind the campaign: the incompetence, bloodshed, hunger, selfishness, horror and suffering. It caused a sensation in France and was rapidly translated into English, going through many, many editions.
As visceral, gripping and graphic an account of the horrors of war as ever was written.
Author — Labaume, Eugène, 1783-1849.
Translator — Anon.
Text taken, whole and complete, from the third edition published in London. Printed for Samuel Leigh, in the Strand, 1815
Original - viii, 442 p.
Illustrations – The Plans cannot be included due to their size [A3]
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